In this companion to The Life of Johnny Reb, Bell Irvin Wiley
explores the daily lives of the men in blue who fought to save the
Union. With the help of many soldiers' letters and diaries, Wiley
explains who these men were and why they fought, how they reacted
to combat and the strain of prolonged conflict, and what they
thought about the land and the people of Dixie. This fascinating
social history reveals that while the Yanks and the Rebs fought for
very different causes, the men on both sides were very much the
"This wonderfully interesting book is the finest memorial the
Union soldier is ever likely to have.... Wiley] has written about
the Northern troops with an admirable objectivity, with sympathy
and understanding and profound respect for their fighting
abilities. He has also written about them with fabulous learning
and considerable pace and humor.
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